Q: You’ve joked about it before, but are you ready to give him another six-year contract yet? Danny Ainge: [Laughs] Yeah. Q: You have to start thinking about that. Sure, we’re only in Year 3, but you can’t risk letting a good coach get away. Danny Ainge: No, listen, he’s a keeper. He’s great. He’s great to work with. Like I said, I think he’s going to be — if he stays in this game long enough — he’s going to be one of the great coaches.
December 1, 2015 | 6:29 pm EST Update
Although they never played together on the same NBA team, Anthony said Bryant worked behind closed doors to make it happen. In 2011, back when he was still in Denver, Anthony was linked to the Lakers in a deal that could have brought (the now broken down) Andrew Bynum to Denver and sent Nene to the Lakers along with Anthony. “Kobe wanted to have it,” Anthony said of the trade with a chuckle. “I don’t know who was going to be part of that deal. There was a lot of talks of Bynum and Lamar Odom and Nene, there was a lot of talks during those times. For some reason I was always connected with the Lakers, maybe it was just Kobe behind closed doors.”
During his most recent free agency run in 2014, Anthony flirted with the Lakers — as did LaMarcus Aldridge in 2015 — in part because of the chance to play alongside Bryant in Kobe’s final years in the NBA. “I can only speak for myself but I would’ve loved to kind of play with Kobe [in the NBA],” said Anthony, who signed a five-year, $124-million deal with the Knicks in 2014. “I got my opportunity twice with the Olympics but I’ll take that. I’ll take it to be able to go out there and kind of learn from him from a mental perspective how he approaches the game, how he sees the game, how he breaks down the game, his knowledge of the game. And how he was able to help me and be almost that mental big brother to me and we became close with those two Olympics.”